Tell someone you love them.

Feeling vulnerable. Feeling safe. Which one drives the choices you make on a day-to-day basis? Over the past ten years I have gone from being guarded, closed, and keeping things inside, to being so transparent I probably make others wince. I have no filter, and say what is on my mind. Yet, I know there are people in my life that I do not tell enough how much they mean to me, and how much I love them.

I did not grow up in a lovey-dovey house. In his final few years my dad was a hugger, but it erked me. I could not remember him being like that when I was a kid, and he had so much anger and depression stored inside him I did not know if the hugs were genuine, or if it was his way to try to keep what was left of our family together. What is funny about growing up in an environment of non lovey-doviness, is that it is harder for me to be that way with family (of course with the exception of Chris and I imagine my future little ones). My future little one(s) most likely will get annoyed with my over the top, make sure they know I love them, gushy momness.

Yes, I am going to share another quote from “Bread & Wine” because it is just a great, wholesome book. Her thoughts on love and vulnerability made me think and ponder. It made me question why I sometimes hold my family a bit of a distance away, and why it is easier for me to bring friends, colleagues, and others to a closer distance. I am not going to tell you my findings, as I think they are still percolating within my thoughts, but wanted to share this quote in hopes that it might inspire you to think about those moments that happen where you can tell those close to you why you love them, and why they matter in your life.

“The heart of hospitality is creating space for these moments, protecting that fragile bubble of vulnerability and truth and love. It’s all too rare that we tell the people we love exactly why we love them—what they bring to our lives, why our lives are richer because they’re in it. We do it best, I think, with our nuclear family—most of us tell our children and spouses how much we love them easily and often.” Page 176

We do not solve our insecurities all at once in life, but I appreciate when the thoughts from an author or friend encourage us to look freshly at our life each day and find how we can do one little thing to pull apart the onion layers of our vulnerability, our fears, and our past issues, and look a little more closely at who we are and what scares us. Hopefully, it makes our life richer, more vibrant, lively, and connects us to what matters most.



Blueberry Crisp. Yes, I know there are a ton of blueberry crisp recipes out there that are to die for, but I have found one that seems to be as healthy as you can get. The one ingredient that may be the most sinful is maple syrup.

Last week I told you about one of my favorite books of 2013, “Bread & Wine” by Shauna Niequist. Over the weekend I made her Blueberry crisp recipe (which is vegan, gluten-free, and sugar-free). It is amazing. Some blueberries, nuts, oats, olive oil, and maple syrup and tada! Bliss. I have to say there is a little bit left, and as I write this I want to quietly creep upstairs and finish it without Chris hearing me. Or, I could take the remaining blueberries (not enough for a full recipe) and divide out what I need to make another small batch tonight.

What I loved when I read the background about this recipe is that she used to make it every Sunday night for her family, no other meal, no veggies, just the Blueberry crisp over homework. Wow. She even mentions on her blog that it is suitable for breakfast, and it really is just like having granola and fruit, warmed. I wanted to share a quote from the beginning of “Bread & Wine” as it made me think about what I might want for my last supper meal, right now that Blueberry crisp would be on the list, with some goat cheese in almost any form, caramel, french fries (freshly made, with a grazing of salt)…oh this could lead to a totally different blog:

“For the record, my last-supper meal looks a bit like this: first, of course, ice-cold champagne, gallons of it, flutes catching the candlelight and dancing. There would be bacon-wrapped dates oozing with goat cheese, and risotto with thick curls of Parmesan and flecks of black pepper. There would be paper-thin pizza with tomatoes and mozzarella and slim ribbons of basil, garlicky pasta and crusty bread and lots of cheeses, a plumy pinot noir and maybe a really dirty martini, because you might as well go big on your last night on earth. There would be dark chocolate sea salted toffee and a bowl of fat blackberries, and we’d stay at the table for hours and hours, laughing and telling stories and reaching for one more bite, one more bite.” Page 12-13

Here is Shauna Niequist’s Blueberry Crisp recipe:

4 cups blueberries (or any fruit, really)

Crisp topping:

1 cup old fashioned oats

½ cup pecans

½ cup almond meal (available at Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, health food stores, or made by putting almonds in food processor until fine, but before they turn to almond butter)

¼ cup maple syrup

¼ cup olive oil

½ tsp salt


Pour four cups fruit into 8×8 pan. Spread crisp topping over the fruit. Bake at 350 degrees 35-40 minutes, or longer if topping and fruit are frozen, until fruit is bubbling and topping is crisp and golden.

Serves 4